Assessments by Human Rights Center are reflected in the Human Rights Watch Report

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On January 12, the Annual Report of the influential international organization Human Rights Watch (HRW) was published. The document reviews the global situation of human rights in 2022 including for Georgia . 

The subsection prepared on Georgia summarizes the acute problems and challenges of Georgia in terms of human rights existing in the last year. The report touches upon the significant issues such as: Freedom of media, labor rights, quality of protection of the rights of women and minorities, etc. The document highlights the following: Problems related to the lack of accountability in regard to the abuse of powers by law enforcement authorities; cases of illegal surveillance; unfair conditions identified in the field of labor relations; low wages in the country and practice of regulating the inadequate renumeration; lack of mechanisms required to reduce the violence against women and LGBT community.

In assessing the situation in terms of women’s human rights, Human Rights Watch refers to the  Statement by Human Rights Center indicating the deficiencies in administration of justice revealed during the proceedings of domestic violence cases. The statement published by HRC in September 2022 indicates that the authorities fail to fulfill the positive obligation of protecting the victims of domestic violence as the persons accused of violence are often released on bail  when measures of restraint are applied against them. Thus, the lenient approach by the courts towards the persons accused of domestic violence increases the risks of further dire consequences and must be regarded as a dangerous practice. Such a trend contradicts the positive commitment of the State to protect victims of domestic violence and to ensure preventive measures .

In the Report, Human Rights Watch brings the case of Khanum Jeiranova submitted by HRC and Safari in cooperation with the European Center for Human Rights (EHRAC) to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) for review in 2018 after having exhausted all the domestic remedies. Jeiranova died in 2014 after experiencing public humiliation and violence by her community. CEDAW found that Georgia, inter alia, failed to provide effective protection of the right to life, further, failed to investigate and punish those responsible for Jeiranova’s ill-treatment and death, and failed to protect her from gender-based discrimination .

HRC still believes that courts in domestic violence cases should take into consideration the specificity of the crime, adequately assess the possible threats that can be derived from the person accused in violence and use the measure of restraint of adequate severity.

Human Rights Center